For customers who are lodging complaints with you, this may very well be the moment in time that determines if you will keep or lose that customer. Being able to address concerns quickly, preoperationally and with retention in mind is critical. In order to anticipate your customer’s needs you will need to consider the supply chain you are using. This knowledge will go a long way to anticipating your customer challenges and possibly avoiding the complaint in the first place. Although we strive for excellence no one is perfect, so preparation is key.
Prompt and Complete Problem Resolution
Leads to Loyal Customers
As orders increase and things get chaotic as you service your growing customer needs, you may be tempted to put off dealing with customer complaints. Or, you may feel compelled to take shortcuts in handling them so that you can attend to other tasks. Either way, you will likely find yourself wishing you had done a better job of addressing issues as you see once-loyal customers taking their business elsewhere, or even worse, voicing their anger and disappointment on social media.
Use the tips below to turn customer complaints into opportunities to impress.
⇨ Staff up before the onslaught, If you've been in business more than 4 years, you know what to expect for peak selling points. Bring on temporary staff (or permanent staff if you plan to grown next year) in advance of the rush. Better to have more compliant-resolution bandwidth than you need, than not to have enough.
⇨ Take every complaint seriously. The quickest way to alienate a customer is to make them feel like their problem is not important. From major issues to minor scuffs, every complaint should be treated like a showstopper
⇨ Take action immediately. Even if completely resolving an issue will take time, you should make contact with the customer as soon as possible so they know you have received their complaint and understand their concerns.
⇨ Expedite the shipping of replacement items. You should assume that every item about which you receive a complete is intended to meet a deadline, and you should take steps to ensure it arrives in the shortest time possible.
⇨ Get the necessary information for insurance claims. If an insurance claim will be filed, be sure to record all the details of the incident so you have what you need to get reimbursed.
⇨ Follow up with a survey and coupon. Show your customers that you want to learn from the issue by asking them to complete a survey. And, apologize for the inconvenience by sending them a coupon. The small cost of that gesture can pay off many times over in future purchases.
How to Prevent Complaints in the First Place
It costs much less — both in time and money — to prevent problems than to deal with them after they occur. Theft and product damage during shipping are two of the most common issues, and both can be minimized by using packaging best practices.
“It costs much less — both in time and money — to prevent problems than to deal with them after they occur.” TWEET THIS
This includes packaging the products well, with proper padding. Your operation needs to be well equipped with a complete range of void fill solutions from bubble cushioning to air pillows, from foam padding to padded mailers and if you need alternatives that deliver a more sustainable message, paper solutions should be the lead void fill in your packing station. Shipping them in strong, lightweight corrugated cartons sealed with water-activated tape (WAT). WAT creates a tamper-evident seal that deters theft. Plus, the physical bond produced between the tape and the carton surface holds tight in virtually all environmental conditions so packages don’t come open and spill their contents in transit.
Preparation is the Key to Success